On a sunny Saturday, the Ladygang & Frocks on Bikes took a bunch of new gals for a gallivant around Waiheke. Jessica Rose reports:

Jess and Sophie getting photobombed by a tree-loving local...
Jess and Sophie, your hosts for the ride (getting photobombed by a friendly local…)

Jess and Sophie’s ‘Waiheke Winter Warm-up’ ride was a fantastic success this weekend, despite threats to the contrary from Auckland weather all week. The day dawned sunny, but with light showers… which did prompt some calls to postpone the ride for fairer weather. But the ladies, some thirty (!) brave and beautiful women, took a gamble (and a raincoat) and agreed to meet at the Downtown ferry terminal at midday.

This turned out to be a brilliant decision. Assembled at the wharf we found a diverse crowd, some who hadn’t ridden with a group before, some dressed to impress, some old friends, and some new to Auckland. All ready to jump on a boat and sail the harbour to enjoy an island adventure. Magic!

Bikes on boats, a beautiful combo
Bikes on boats, a beautiful combo

After a shared lunch on the ferry, we sailed to Matiatia wharf,where we were greeted in style by Tanya and a contingent of riders from Bike Waiheke. Gifts were shared between the groups, e-bikes were hired, and after a quick check to make sure everyone was ready, we set off towards our first stop for the day, in Oneroa.

A p?whiri, Bike Waiheke style, featuring a ukulele!
A powhiri, Bike Waiheke style, featuring a ukulele!

A big ‘cheers’ to Cove Bites & Brews for letting us use every glass available for our first round of our wine tour… The sun shone hot and bright for our sojourn on the deck, while people got to know each other and shared stories – and bike locks. A special thank you to Charlotte Rose who managed to secure up to 4 bikes at a time with her spare lock!

And then we were off to the next place. A ride around the waterfront and across the skinny neck of the island took the crew to The Goldie Room. We have to tip our hats to them, and not just for the superb tasting. Our group had spread out along the road to the winery, so we had a wee hold-up trying to catch up with our fastest rider, who had zoomed past the venue! In the end, we arrived back at Goldie’s at the same time as another tasting group, but the Goldie Room didn’t skip a beat.

Goldieroombikes

Goldieroomwines

Goldietasting

Then we were off to the last stop of the ride. Sophie’s mum had kindly offered to host the troops for tea and cake to finish off the day. Everyone made it there eventually, due to the invaluable assistance of Darleen Tana of eCycles NZ who was there to scout ahead when some of the ladies got separated. It’s easy to get distracted while biking along chatting in beautiful weather…

Sophiesmums

sophies mums

And at 5pm, Sophie and Jessica and 28 happy new friends pedalled their way back to the ferry terminal. How lucky were we? There were three rain showers in the course of the afternoon… and yet not a drop had fallen while the ride was in transit.

It was a wonderful day, and we look forward to many more. It just goes to show that there are a lot of keen everyday people out there who are interested in taking their bike out if there is somewhere safe to ride it, and convivial people to ride with.

See you all next time! And keep your eyes peeled for the big gorgeous ‘Sunday Best’ ride in October, coming to you via a crack team of enthusiasts in the fine arts of frocking up and rocking on.

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